Kids, reading, and "good" lit...

Melissa Proffitt Melissa at
Thu Aug 12 12:59:48 EDT 1999

On Thu, 12 Aug 1999 09:55:06 +0100, Hallie O'Donovan wrote:

>>I fall to the temptation of mentioning Henry Tilney (of Jane Austen's
>>_Northanger Abbey_.
>This is too weird.  I went to bed last night pondering the connection
>between Northanger Abbey and Howl's Moving Castle, and wake up this morning
>to find this.  I'd noted the similarity between the opening pages of the
>two before (nobody would have thought Catherine was meant to be a heroine,
>and Sophie... well we've gone into that).  I'm still debating whether or
>not there's more of a connection than just that, but now we're off in an
>hour to the ferry (first stop Wales!).  

Wales?  I'm so jealous. :)

Other connections I noticed (I love _Northanger Abbey_, because it's so
funny, especially if you know anything about the romances it's a satire of)
is that what the heroine *believes* to be true is not actually
so--Catherine's romanticizing of the death of Mrs. Tilney, Sophie's
assumptions about Howl being heartless--and yet have a grain of truth.  I
particularly like that Howl is said to be "heartless", meaning the sort of
cad who goes around collecting women and breaking their hearts.  Then Sophie
meets him and realizes that he really isn't like that, much.  Only he *is*
heartless, in a very literal sense.

>I was a little hesitant to bring up
>Austen, because my own personal version of the Awful Boyfriend was an
>English Major, who was absolutely scathing about idjits like meself who
>actually liked Austen :(

An English major who didn't like Austen?  Sounds like he should have been
looking in the mirror for the idjit....

Seriously, what kind of an imbecile can major in English and not be aware of
the vast canon of literary criticism about Jane Austen?  I was an English
major and wrote any number of papers about her...and that wasn't even my
field of specialization!  She's especially good fodder for feminist
criticism if you happen to like that sort of thing.  Sheesh.

Melissa Proffitt,
annoyed with Hallie's Awful Boyfriend whom she has never met but would like
to trounce....
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